RealtyTrac Says Philly Was Still Mired in Foreclosure Filings Last Year

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In spite of national foreclosure filings taking a dip in 2014, RealtyTrac says their data and analysis of the Greater Philadelphia Area found it “still mired in foreclosures, short sales, and bank repossessions” last year.

Oh, bother.

According to the Inquirer, RealtyTrac’s report mentions distressed homes and zombie properties that depress prices in certain neighborhoods as the culprits. Also noted are slow-moving judicial foreclosure backlogs:

“The list of states with increased activity in the last months of 2014 includes those with judicial foreclosure backlogs, such as Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and New York.”

Such backlogs mean that in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, the foreclosure process often takes three years or more. Many mortgage lenders deferred pursuing foreclosures because of the backlogs, and the 2014 increase reflected attempts to catch up.

H/T: Foreclosures down nationwide, still increasing in Phila. region [Inquirer]

Redfin Predicts Philly’s Housing Market Will Be a “Sleeper” in 2015

Photo credit: Flicker user Jeanette Runyon.

Photo credit: Flicker user Jeanette Runyon.

Glance at the latest reports on Philly’s housing market and you find a city with an improving economy, slowly burgeoning job opportunities, and a rising number of new constructions. Reading Redfin’s most recent 2015 prediction chart on the topic, however, humbles our town down to “sleeper” status in the face of “stalwarts” like Houston, Chicago and Dallas.

So how did the real estate brokerage come to that conclusion? For one thing, they didn’t just look at national averages since market level data doesn’t usually show the “widely varying conditions” in the numbers. Instead, they took a closer look at each market and came up with six housing personas, all of which are identified as such:  Read more »

Morning Headlines: University City Leads the City In New Office Construction

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It’s official: University City is in a construction boom and we have the numbers to prove it thanks to the University City District’s annual State of University City report.

According to their findings, not only has their been a huge surge in the neighborhood’s population, but there are thirty-two new development projects that were “advanced or completed” during this cycle alone, totaling to “6.9 million sq. ft. of new office, research, residential, academic and medical facilities in addition to nearly 2.2 acres of public space.”

Naked Philly’s Lou Mancinelli points out that the biggest increase in new University City construction has been in private investment, which has earned the neighborhood first place when it comes to office construction in the Philadelphia: “82% of all office construction in the region taking place in UC.”

Related to that, the report also found that office occupancy was highest in UC than any other submarket in Philadelphia (the report says there are twenty-seven), boasting 96% occupancy.

All in all, the last five years has brought University City 9.99 million square feet of real estate projects. Check out the full report here to get a full visual of UC’s growth, as well as the housing graph below.

Read more »

Philadelphia’s Third Quarter Results in Ambivalent Housing Market Report

Photo credit: Jeff Fusco

Photo credit: Jeff Fusco

Metrostudy published their third quarter housing report for the Philadelphia MSA (that is, Metropolitan Statistical area, which includes the four counties, plus three counties in New Jersey and three in Delaware) a few days ago.  Their findings show that the region is…well, we’ll let one of their regional director’s explain: Read more »

Morning Headlines: There’s a Construction Boom in University City

4101 Sansom, in development by Campus Apartments. Photo: Laura Kicey

4101 Sansom, in development by Campus Apartments. Photo: Laura Kicey

No doubt new projects sprouting around the city are contributing to Philadelphia’s growth spurt, but University City in particular has been seeing a substantial rise in developments that had last been present decades ago. According to Natalie Kostelni of the Philadelphia Business Journal, the neighborhood is getting over $1 billion in funds for new constructions.

Other positives alongside the building boom include:

Jobs and employment have risen, population grown, housing stock increased, the number of restaurants and retailers crept up and the amount of office inventory has expanded and maintains an enviable 96 occupancy rate, according to University City’s latest annual report. An abundance of development activity is underway and billions of dollars more will eventually be set in motion.

Among the projects planned to help revitalize the West Philly neighborhood even further are the 40th St. trolley station renovation, which is a collaboration between the University City District, SEPTA, and various city agencies.

University City on the rise [Business Journal]

More news this way…

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Philly Housing is Having a Growth Spurt

Photo credit: Flicker user Jeanette Runyon.

Photo credit: Flickr user Jeanette Runyon.

In a contributing article to Next City, Emma Jacobs reports that Philadelphia could be in the midst of an unprecedented housing boom. The growth spurt is evident throughout the city, which was ranked in third place by the Associated General Contractors of America in a list of metro regions who saw a rise in construction jobs.

“Neither of us can remember, in our lifetimes in this city, a construction boom of this magnitude,” said deputy mayor of economic development Alan Greenberger during the announcement.

Read more »

Philadelphia Is #2 On Counties with Most Man-Made Environmental Hazards List

Photo credit: Vit Brunner via Flickr.

Photo credit: Vit Brunner via Flickr.

Since adding environmental hazard data to its already deep pool of information, RealtyTrac has gone ahead and sorted through its figures to publish a report ranking counties with the highest and lowest in man-made environmental hazards. As can be seen in the chart below, we’ve made it onto one of these lists, fairing at number two on “Top 50 Counties: Highest Prevalence of Man-Made Environmental Hazards.” Yikes.

Real estate-wise, hazardous counties appear to have lower median home values compared to the less hazardous markets. Yet interestingly, short-term home appreciation has been “stronger in the 50 housing markets with the highest prevalence” of hazards. Long-term price appreciation, though, has been weaker. More from RealtyTrac’s VP, Daren Blomquist:  Read more »

Zillow: Home Values and Rents Are Up

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Zillow’s latest research shows that nationally and locally home values are up, based on an analysis of 515 metropolitan and micropolitan areas, with 35 of the largest metros areas — Philadelphia included. Here are some overarching stats:

U.S. home values rose 0.5 percent in August 2014 from July, to $175,600.
On a year-over-year basis, home values were up 6.6 percent from August 2013.
The last time national home values were at this level was in March 2005.
Rents were up 3.3 percent on an annual basis.
The calls for 3.1 percent appreciation from August 2014 to August 2015.

In August, Philadelphia, like most of the largest metros, experienced an increase in home values. But it wasn’t a leader: The highest increases were in Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Riverside and Atlanta. Even so, none of the increases bring any of the metros up to the peak home values from April 2007.

Read more »

RealtyTrac Heat Map Reveals Where Millennials and Baby Boomers Are Going

RealtyTrac heatmap showing where the largest shift in millennial population is occuring.

RealtyTrac heatmap showing where the largest shift in millennial population is occuring.

Which counties are seeing an influx of millennials? Which are seeing rapid emigration? And where the heck are baby boomers going? RealtyTrac’s latest report answers these and other questions after analyzing Census population data in over 1,800 counties between 2007 and 2013.

In addition to using the Census data to track each generation’s migration patters, the study used rental rates and median prices to see what prompted millennials and baby boomers to go certain places and not others. (For the record, RealtyTrac defines baby boomers as people born between the years 1945 and 1964, and millennials as those born between 1977 and 1992.)

Here’s what the real estate website found in its analysis: Read more »

Morning Headlines: Home Values In Greater Philadelphia Area Have Gone Up, And Expected to Keep Rising

Screen shot Zillow

The national average for home values may be $174,800, but Philly’s is higher. Here, the median home value is $199,200, a number which Zillow says is the result of a sneaky 3.3% spike every year.

According to the report, Greater Philadelphia Area home values are 13.9% higher than the rest of the country. Using this data, Zillow predicts a 0.9% rise in area home prices “over the next year (July 2014-July 2015)”.

Philadelphia home values up 4.6 percent in past year, says Zillow [Business Journal]

In other news…

Read more »

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